Third off-load complete! This season we're planning on 4 and a partial trips soooo that means I should be back in Seattle by the end of the month. Yes, THIS month! After raiding the sea yet again we headed full steam ahead for Dutch. Literally. When that happens it is inevitable fillets will be flying. The floor is continually ripped out from under our feet and I am reminded yet again of why this job actually is hard. There is no "Let's bag it up and start again later". In a show-must-go-on attitude, we process until the very last Pollock fish is safely filleted and resting in the deep freeze. Frustration is rampant and tempers flare but I remind myself that I'm here on my own accord. Clean up ensues and the smiles come out again. The last 3 hours of the offload (which entails me standing on the dock with a tape gun) were hellacious. Tape just doesn't stick to soaking wet cardboard and refuses to adhere when applied by frozen fingers. Again, another swift reality check that we really are in a small corner of the world, in the very, very northwest. Fairly certain it was snowing up and as the ice was slashing my corneas I escaped to my other self. The one who uses full sentences and has complete command of her digits. We were due for a nasty blow and it hit. Over 50 mph winds but at least it was a powdery, packable snow. Snowball fights directed at guys standing in a truck is probably something like shooting fish in a barrel, especially when said guys are from a climate that never sees temps below 65, (insert evil cackle here). I then actually watched the belt get blown off the conveyor, WITH several 50lb boxes sitting on it.
Plans for the summer are shaping up nicely for my gig at Alaska Wildland Adventures (www.alaskawildland.com). This time around I'll be the "safari manager" dealing with more trip logistics and base camp happenings as well as running a few trips around the state throughout the summer. I'm just ready to lace up my hiking boots and smell a campfire again.
Anyone have some "must-do's" for a road trip from Colorado to Washington via the northern route? Rocky and I are again coaxing the red bandit Subaru back to its home in April and hope to hit some National Parks and the like along the way. I'm definitely voting for a pit stop in Missoula as they have a grad program IÕm interested in, and the Big Sky territory holds some allure for me.
Happy March to all and please oh please do not take St. Patrick's Day for granted. Drink early, much, and green!